Winter Olympics

McDonald’s supporting 2014 Winter Games

Partnered with the Olympics, McDonald’s reaches millions of fans around the world with their campaign “Cheers To Sochi” this campaign was created so that supporters of the Olympics can personally send messages or “cheers” to their favorite athlete using the hashtag #CheersToSochi on twitter or by viewing www.cheerstosochi.com. Global chief brand officer of McDonald’s Corporation, Steve Easterbrook, stated “McDonald’s takes tremendous pride in our 38-year partnership of the Games, and we share in the International Olympic Committee’s passion for bringing the world together. This Olympic experience gives fans the ability to make personal connections with athletes in Sochi in a way they’ve never had before.” Current Olympic athletes support “CheersToSochi”. Patrick Kane US hockey player, Drew Doughty Canadian Hockey Player, and several other athletes encourage fans from all around the world to send #CheersToSochi as they watch the games.

McDonald’s acknowledges that activists target Olympic sponsors to voice their opinions regarding the Russian LGBT legislation. McDonald’s supports the tradition of the Olympics, all the hard working athletes who participate in the Olympics, and especially human rights. McDonald’s campaign “Cheers To Sochi” is discrimination free. McDonald’s believes that the Olympic Games should be available for everyone including spectators, officials, media and athletes.  The “Cheers to Sochi” campaign is just one way that McDonald’s will celebrate the Olympic winter games. McDonald’s strives to bring family and friends together and to do that a new playground will be donated to the city of Sochi. McDonald’s generous donations, programs, and “Cheers To Sochi” campaign truly expresses their partnership and commitment McDonald’s has with the Olympics.

Fans can visit www.cheerstosochi.com to send “cheers” or messages to athletes and teams as they get ready to compete in the Sochi 2014 Winter Games.

No Cable? No Problem! Stay Tuned on Twitter

Like the majority of college students in the world, I am a little low on monetary funds and have had to make some tough financial choices throughout my four years. For instance, I now only allow myself to purchase things that are on sale, sometimes I even cut coupons! One of the more difficult choices I’ve made to save money was deciding to forgo cable. I know, I know, how does she do it you ask? Well, I accomplish this feat with a great deal of Netflix and a little bit of mooching off of my friends.  However, when it came to the winter Olympics, spending every day at a friend’s house monopolizing their TV was not an option.

Luckily, the Olympics took to social media and cable was no longer a necessity to stay up-to-date on the games!

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@Sochi2014 is a twitter account created to constantly update followers on every aspect of the Winter Games. The account tweeted and posted pictures pertaining to every aspect of the Winter Games including:

  • the opening ceremony
  • the closing ceremony
  • the Sochi 2014 Bear
  • daily schedule
  • scores
  • standings
  • countdowns to events

And so much more!

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Above is an example of a daily schedule @Sochi2014 posted for its followers. Its readability and accessibility made it convenient for anyone to view and download any time of day.

@Sochi2014 also utilized hashtags and Olympian’s usernames enabling its followers to view their favorite topics and stay current on their favorite athletes:

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As well as their favorite teams:

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We are all aware that social media and the internet in general, are becoming increasingly influential and necessary to our everyday lives. However, witnessing the reach and capability of social media as a communication outlet, specifically in regards to the Olympics, still ceases to amaze me.

Without cable, I have managed to stay tuned to every event and outcome of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. What are your views on using social media to stay current on the Olympic Games? Is it just as effective, if not more, than watching each event live?

Kate Hansen Cries Wolf

SOCHI, Russia- U.S. Luger, Kate Hansen has spotted a “wolf” in the halls of her Sochi Dorm room.  The Olympic athlete released a 17 second video on YouTube, showing the “wolf” wondering through the halls of the dorm.Image 

Here is the official video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qZA-xOeQmE

Hansen tweeted the link to the video on her Twitter account.  The YouTube video has had over 1 million views, and more than 1,100 people have commented on the video stating whether they believe it is real wolf or just a stray dog.  Russia has been struggling with stray dogs in the area around the Olympic Games.  However, Hansen did not believe it was a stray dog and asked her 20,000 Twitter followers what they thought about the so called wolf.  In addition to reaching Hansen’s Twitter followers, the video has been shown all over media-outlets.  Some people think it is real, while others believe it was just a hoax.

Recently, reports have shown that the video was in fact a real wolf.  However, the wolf was not a Russian wolf.  In fact, the wolf was an American wolf.  You may ask, well what was an American wolf doing in Sochi, Russia?  The answer to that question is simple.   The wolf was not in Sochi.  In fact, the wolf was filmed in America walking on a set that resembled the dorms in Sochi. 

Now the question is who would do such a thing?  Was it Kate Hansen?  To an extent, the prank was partially executed by Kate Hansen.  Hansen was working with comedian, Jimmy Kimmel throughout the whole process.  Jimmy Kimmel has been known to be the mastermind behind many viral video pranks.  Jimmy Kimmel revealed the prank on his show and proved how American news can go viral in a matter of minutes, even if the news is not actually true.

Here is the link to the “Wolf” Prank being revealed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hze_6-f5KNA#t=113

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Sochi Winter Olympics @OHT

 

@OHT is the twitter Handle for One Hour Translation, a professional translation service backed by 15,000 professional HUMAN translators! @OHT offered services for free surrounding the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

The service proved to be a success. It was promoted by Mashable, SD Times, Fast Company and more. The Israeli app proved to be popular, ranking number one by the British Telegraph.

So what made @OHT so trendy during the winter Olympics? One Hour Translation offered free services to twitter users who were seeking to understand any phrase, sign, tweet, etc. that was in another language and it was simple to do and responses were fast. One Hour Translation released a statement that the services would be available for free during the winter Olympics. From athletes, reporters and visitors in Sochi, to fans at home anyone could tweet a phrase to @OHT followed by the language they would like it to be translated in to and receive a rapid response.
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With the service open to everyone from start to finish of the Winter Olympics, Ofer Shoshan, CEO of One Hour Translation was seeking none other than success in marketing of his brand, and why should he?

With the Olympics being an international sporting event and a global economy severely lacking in communication skills and language translation @OHT was sure to make a social media statement by offering free services.

Over all I have to say that the One Hour Translation marketing platform during the Winter Olympics was a great idea for PR, and from what I can tell proved to be successful, at least by the British Telegraph.

Did you know about the convenient handle on twitter, @OHT?

Did you use the service or did you find another service to be more useful?

Olympians (and some brands) jump on #SochiSelfie trend

We all were either shocked or unphased by the naming of “Selfie” as 2013’s word of the year, but the trend didn’t stop there.  Olympians of all kinds are taking the time to put their front facing cell phone camera to use and in doing so sharing the experience of the Sochi Olympics with their thousands of followers back home and throughout the world.

Steven Holcomb USA Bobsled

Steven Holcomb, USA Bobsleder, used the #SochiSelfie hashtag on Twitter and shared a photo he posted to Facebook with the Olympic rings behind him.

Aimee Fuller GB Snowboarding

Aimee Fuller, Team GB Snowboarder takes a selfie in front of a Russian statue and NBC Olympics posted it to Twitter.

preston griffail putin selfie

Preston Griffall, a part of the USA Luge team snaps a selfie with a distant Vladmir Putin in the background and posts to Twitter.  Snapping selfies with Putin also became a small trend on social media throughout the Games.

Oreo selfie

Even milk’s favorite cookie, Oreo, joined in on the #SochiSelfie trend posting this close-up to Twitter.

Any event, even the Olympics, becomes a social sharing event thanks to today’s social media networks, phones and other technology.  Through the use of their social media accounts, Olympians seem more like us: sharing moments that they want to remember with their followers.

Despite the early questions of media and social media use at the start of the Games, many of the Olympians have jumped on board.  The IOC’s Social Media Guidelines outline that they must post in first-person in a diary-type format.  They must not “assume the role of a journalist, reporter or any other media capacity, or disclose any information which is confidential or private in relation to any other person or organization.” Photo guidelines state that they are not “permitted to commercialize, sell or otherwise distribute these photographs.”  Although there are guidelines to what can be posted, Olympians seem to be making the most of it sharing photos of meeting others and representing their country.

Unfortunately, it seems the selfie trend isn’t going away any time soon. Here are some more #SochiSelfies.

#StripForJackie: The Internet Strips Down to Stand Up for Olympic Athlete

Lebanese Olympic skier Jackie Chamoun has come under fire by the Lebanese Minister for Sports and Youth recently after some racy images of her surfaced in the last couple of weeks. The images show the athlete naked on top of a snowy mountain wearing nothing but some underwear bottoms and some strategic covering.

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The photoshoot in question actually took place three years ago and was used in an Austrian calendar where Jackie appeared along with some other athletes. Jackie took to her Facebook to clear the air, stating that the images that are currently surfacing were not actually used in the calendar and were behind the scenes photos that were not supposed to go public.

Unfortunately for Ms. Chamoun, they did.

Fortunately for her, however, the Internet stepped up to defend her, creating the hashtag #StripForJackie on Twitter and creating an “I Am Not Naked” Facebook page. Many people have posted photos of themselves in their birthday suits to show their support for Jackie.

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Even some Lebanese brands posted photos to show their support of Jackie Chamoun. Almaza Beer proudly stripped down their bottle for the Olympic athlete.

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Alrifai Roastery proudly displayed their nuts in a show of solidarity for the Lebanese athlete.

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Jackie posted an apology to her Facebook page saying,

“I know that Lebanon is a conservative country and this is not the image that reflects our culture. I fully understand if you want to criticize this.”

Should Jackie Chamoun have had to apologize for the photos? Was a Facebook post the appropriate place to do it?

McDonalds on their promotion game in Sochi 2014

Free food is given at the Olympic Village in Sochi, so why wouldn’t athletes enjoy the free food that is offered? Torin Yater-Wallace, U.S. freeskiier, was found taking full advantage with McDonalds, who has been an Olympic sponsor for decades.

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He tweeted Wednesday February 12th, “Luh me mac D’s who in the mountain village needs some, I’m about to be the supplier,” explaining that all of the food was for his friends. Accusations came out that Yater-Wallace was stoned in the picture and tweets went flying.  Even bad publicity is giving McDonald’s recognition and advertising.

Steven Holcomb, U.S. bobsledder, tweeted Wednesday “No McDonald’s in the Mountain Village, but the cheeseburger fairy still found us,” with the picture shown below.

View image on Twitter

McDonald’s is reaching out to all the athletes and in return the athletes are helping to promote through Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook reaching many audiences.

LGTB was a big issue among the Sochi games. McDonald’s, along with many other supporting companies, are trying to help the issue. They tweeted this logo showing their support for equal relationships and how anyone can enjoy McDonalds.

McDonalds is also trying to get everyone involved in the winning games moments by their logo, “Let’s all celebrate with a bite.”  As the gold medal winners bite their medal, we should bite nuggets as if living in the moment with them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0EEsRADynvk

McDonalds overall is reaching out to all audiences with different styles of promotions, showing that everyone can have McDonalds and be a part of the Sochi 2014 games.They are on their game reacting with a different campaign for every issue and utilizing social media to the fullest.  The real question is does all of the publicity actually gives McDonalds a profit?

And Shaun White places……… 4th?!

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On Tuesday February 11th many Olympians, Americans, and anyone who knows about the Winter Olympics were in complete shock when their snowboarding king, Shaun White placed 4th on men’s half-pipe. This was the first time that Americans were completely shut out of the half-pipe since 1998 when the sport was introduced to the Olympics. 

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White has two gold medals under his belt from the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics, and everyone expected ‘the flying tomato’, the nickname he earned from his long red locks, to take home gold again but were shockingly disappointed by his performance.

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White was in hopes to become the 4th athlete in Winter  Olympics history to win three consecutive gold medals, but his dreams were cut after finishing his runs with two falls in the first, and two slips in the second leaving him with a score of 35.00 on run 1, and 90.25 on the second.

 “Tonight was just not my time,” White said.

Even though he didn’t place, he still stays humble and has on-going support from his fans. He plans on going back home to reflect with his family, and is even going on tour with his band.

The 27 year-old states he thinks he’ll be back in the 2018 winter Olympics to compete and hopefully earn his 3rd gold medal.

So, why do you think Shaun White didn’t medal at Sochi? Should he have competed in the slopestyle event? Did he get too cocky in believing that he’d hit gold medal trifecta? Was he more focused on his tour dates?

I personally believe his haircut threw off his arrow dynamics which messed up his whole game. 

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#neverforget

 

So-Chic: Fashion at the Opening Ceremony for Sochi in 140-Characters

One of the most anticipated parts of any Olympic Games, Summer or Winter, is the Opening Ceremony. It is a time when viewers can see people of different nations all across the globe come together as one, promoting unity, spirit, and national pride. For me, the most exciting part of the Opening Ceremony is the Parade of Nations.

It’s always interesting to see the number of athletes each nation has, their reactions when they enter the stadium, and the unique fashion choices for the athletes’ outfits. With the growing number of users on social networking sites, conversation and critique of each country’s outfit choices is so easy to tap into.

Although I was enthralled by many other components of Sochi’s Opening Ceremony, I really got into the discussion and expressing my own opinion about the fashion choices made by the different countries. I could really and truly go on about this subject, because of my own personal interests, but I’ll keep my discussion focused on the more major fashion decisions.

Because of the massive time difference between the United States and Sochi, the Opening Ceremony was prerecorded several hours in advance of its 7:30 p.m. EST showing on NBC. With that, some discussion about the event had already begun—starting with the design for Team USA’s outfits, designed by Ralph Lauren.

Team USA

In contrast to his 2012 outfits that were manufactured in China, Ralph Lauren made sure to have 2014’s outfits made in the USA, which pleased many. However, the patchwork-style blazers received mixed reviews from the online community.

https://twitter.com/ZWH73192/status/431977420673933312

As you can see, some users found the “ugly Christmas sweater” look to be patriotic and unique, but another faction of online users was not so pleased with them, including myself. Typically, I find Ralph Lauren’s pieces to be tasteful and stylish, but that was not at all the case with the jackets at Sochi’s Opening Ceremony. I, and many other users, found them to look tacky, hideous, and too busy.

Showing national pride through your team’s outfits is obviously an important part of the Parade of Nations, but Team USA really dropped the ball on this one. I would’ve preferred a much more subtle look with a simpler design and perhaps some red-white-and-blue accessory pieces, such as hats and scarves.

Team Germany

Another nation whose outfit choices caused some conversation was Germany, whose brightly colored coats and hats gave off an unintentional political message. One of the well-known issues regarding the 2014 Winter Olympics is Russia’s strong stance against homosexuality and its distribution of anti-gay propaganda throughout the country.

At first glance of the outfits and keeping in mind the design and colors of the gay pride flag, one might think Germany and designer Willy Bogner wanted to show their support for openly homosexual athletes as well as making a statement that they disagree with Russia’s views on homosexuality. However, Germany affirmed that they actually did not have any motive related to this for their outfit choices, but many online users felt the country said this in order to avoid backlash from Sochi and the Russian government.

Other Honorable Mentions

Although Teams USA and Germany seemed to cause the majority of the buzz, I thought I would share a few of my favorites from the other countries, for those who might have missed part of the Parade of Nations.

I really liked the pattern on Team Ukraine’s jackets. Although Team USA’s were too busy for my liking, I think that was more due to the patchwork-style of their sweaters; Team Ukraine’s jackets did it for me.

Lacoste did a GREAT job on Team France’s uniforms. Very simple, very French, and very stylish. If only Ralph Lauren could have followed suit with something closer to this.

Of course, I need to take a moment to mention the host country, Team Russia. I really liked the long, puffy jackets with the fur lining worn by the women, and I enjoyed how each athlete from Russia wore a different colored jacket–either red, white, or blue.

Conclusion

Looking at some of the tweets about both Team USA’s and Team Germany’s outfit choices, amongst many other fashion-related tweets that were posted during the four-hour Opening Ceremony at Sochi, we can see how social media has allowed for members of the online community to interact, chat, and discuss these topics at a much more rapid rate than they would have in the days before Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking capabilities.

That being stated, this is exemplifying how Twitter is truly a “social streaming” type of network which allows for numerous non-linear conversations to occur at the same time about the same topic. With first impressions and appearance being such a big impact in numerous situations, what were some of your thoughts about the outfits at Sochi 2014’s Opening Ceremony and the surrounding discussion?